RUMOR: Rockets interested in signing Tom Thibodeau if Mike D’Antoni leaves
In the event that Mike D’Antoni leaves the Houston Rockets, the team is reportedly interested in hiring Tom Thibodeau as head coach.
As reported by Marc Berman of the New York Post, several teams “will have strong interest” in Thibodeau as their new head coach. These include the New York Knicks and the Brooklyn Nets, both of which have vacancies in the head coaching post.
The Rockets are interested too, but only if D’Antoni doesn’t sign an extension.
Mike D’Antoni is in the last year of his contract with the Rockets. He could still return to the team in the 2020-21 season, but it is worth noting that extension talks between Houston and their head coach were cast aside after initial negotiations in May last year didn’t bear any fruit.
Prior to the May 2019 discussions, D’Antoni stated his intent to coach the Rockets for three more seasons.
To recall, D’Antoni stepped in as Rockets coach in 2016. With Houston, he has never missed the playoffs and made it as far as the Western Conference Finals. In 2017, he was crowned Coach of the Year — his second win in his illustrious career.
Thibodeau, meanwhile, is still in search of a coaching post since parting ways with the Minnesota Timberwolves in 2019. The Rockets have been interested in Thibs since 2016. An old tweet by Marc Stein of the New York Times revealed that Thibodeau was on top of their list during their coaching hunt four years ago.
The Rockets, I’m told, are highly intrigued by the structure and discipline Tom Thibodeau could instill after a season of slippage in both.
— Marc Stein (@TheSteinLine) April 13, 2016
Will the Rockets finally land Tom Thibodeau? Or will Mike D’Antoni give it one more go?
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